Monthly Archives: January 2010

Day 10-Class 7

I planned a little better this morning: set my alarm, ate, drank some water, I didn’t rush. I think I ate too much, though. I ate a peach, a plum and a teeny tiny container of yogurt.

Erika taught class again. 🙂 I am not trying to go to all her classes, really! It just so happens the times that work for me are the classes she teaches!

It was H-O-T! I mean REALLY hot this morning. Like almost hard to breathe hot. I was worried I hadn’t consumed enough water. I was correct. 😦 I was dripping sweat minutes into the first breathing exercise, Standing Deep Breathing:

I knew it was going to be a challenging class when, after the first set of the breathing exercise, I felt like I had gone swimming…in a hot tub…with my clothes on. HOT, HOT, HOT!

I rested the most I have since the first class. How much water do I need to drink before class? They say if you take a morning class, but drank a lot of water the previous day, then you should be okay. I was NOT okay, and I drink a lot of water. I constantly have a glass of water to drink. Ask anyone who knows me well: I pee a LOT. Maybe I need an IV?

So, most of the standing poses were quite demanding today. However, there were some poses that were easier for me than yesterday. Even though it was hot and I felt light headed on and off, my body felt better. I wasn’t as tight.

I did these poses better than I did yesterday:

Awkward Pose:

Standing Bow Pulling Pose:

I got a, “Very nice, Julie” from Erika. 🙂

Wind Removing Pose:

I feel my hips loosening up…slowly, but surely. 🙂

Bow Pose:

And…I STILL love camel pose! I love it, I love it, I love it.

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Posted by on January 31, 2010 in Yoga


Day 9-Class 6

More than half way there! We stayed up late last night watching movies. I then woke up a lot in the early morning worried I was going to oversleep and miss the 10AM yoga class. Well, then I almost did…I jumped out of bed at 9:45! $hit! I threw some clothes on, quickly packed a bag and dashed out the door: no water and no food. 😦 I made it to class, however. 🙂 And, Erika was teaching. YAY!

I was still half asleep when class began, but the warmth of the room felt really good. Today’s class was really, really difficult. I was tight. (maybe because I had just woken up?) I was hungry. Nearly every pose was hard for me today. I felt like I had taken a couple steps backward. Poop. Oh well, I made it to class and that’s what’s important. And, I sweated a LOT today, which felt incredible.

Even though every pose was difficult today, I found all the balancing poses to be exceptionally hard. I couldn’t straighten my dang leg and I was wobbling all over the place:

Standing Head to Knee Pose:

I still do the beginner version of the above pose:

And even it was challenging today. Wobble, wobble.

Standing Bow Pulling Pose:

Wobble. Wobble. Wobble.

Balancing Stick Pose:


Camel Pose was my favorite, yet again:

Although today was difficult, I am not discouraged. It just makes me want to come back tomorrow and try harder. I will plan my morning better so I don’t have to roll out of bed and right into yoga. I still am loving it…craving it, actually. I am more clear-headed than I have been in years. I am full of ideas and excited about the future. I finally feel like I am in control of my life, and it feels really, really good. 🙂

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Posted by on January 30, 2010 in Yoga


Day 8-Day off

I hadn’t been climbing in quite some time, so Charlie and I went climbing instead of going to yoga. We climb at Vertical World in Magnolia (I guess it’s considered Magnolia). I have been a member for about a year, and I have been climbing a little over a year. I always knew I wanted to get into climbing, but not until I met Charlie did I actually do it. I love it. It’s an incredible full-body workout, including the mind. Not only do you use your upper body to pull up all your weight, but you use your mind to figure out the puzzle. It’s a great stress release. Yoga will definitely help with my climbing ability. I feel like I climbed pretty well tonight; I finished a 5.10d, which I have only done a handful of times. A 5.10d is hard. Here is the rating system:

Rock Climbing Rating Systems
USA UK Tech UK Adj French UIAA Australian
5.5 VD
5.6 4a S
5.7 4b HS
5.8 4b VS 5a 6- 16
5.9 5a HVS 5b 6 17
5.10a E1 5c 6+ 18
5.10b 5b 6a 19
5.10c E2 7- 20
5.10d 5c 6b 7 21
5.11a E3 7+ 22
5.11b 6c 23
5.11c 6a E4 8- 24
5.11d 7a 8 25
5.12a E5 8+ 26
5.12b 6b 7b 8 25
5.12c E6 9- 27
5.12d 6c 7c 9 28
5.13a E7 9+ 29
5.13b 8a
5.13c 7a 10- 30
5.13d E8 8b 10 31
5.14a 10+ 32
5.14b 7b 8c
5.14c E9 11- 33
5.14d 7c 9a 11

And if you would like to learn more about rock climbing, please visit:

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Posted by on January 30, 2010 in Climbing


Day 7-Class 5

Half way there! I went to the 6:30PM class. Tonight was a great class for beginners, especially if you are a guy, for these reasons: 1. Erika was teaching (Yup, she is still my favorite. She is sweet. Cute. Gentle on the newbies. She has a soothing voice) 2. The room seemed less hot. Maybe I am getting used to the heat? Or maybe it is because Erika left a fan on? 3. There were men. Lots of men. More men than in any other class I have been to. Old hairy men wearing speedos. Middle aged men there with their wives. Young men (boys) who could have been out drinking with their buddies, but went to yoga instead. Good job. So, if you’re a guy, and you were going to go to your first class tonight, and you didn’t…you really missed out. I am not going to name any names. 😉

Ok. On to the poses.

I had a really hard time with Awkward Pose:

Maybe it had something to do with my hard day skiing and my running this week. My quads were squealing. Ouch.

Fixed Firm Pose was hard…again.

I think it will be for a while. My knees don’t like it. I couldn’t lie back at all. All I can do is sit there with my butt barely on the floor. Come on, knees, loosen up, please!

I kicked butt at Camel Pose, again:

It is my favorite pose right now. It feels so good to stretch my back out.When my head was back, I looked around the room, and saw the majority of the class in the beginner version of the pose…how you start the pose:

Am I doing it wrong? Why is it pretty easy for me to go all the way back? My gymnastics background maybe?

So, since Camel Pose is my favorite right now, I decided to read in depth the benefits of the pose. Here you go:

Camel Pose


The deepest backbend in the Bikram series, all postures performed up until now prepare the body for Camel pose. This posture compresses the spine and flushes out old fluids and blood, allowing for new, oxygen-rich replacement fluids to lubricate and nourish the spine.

  • Stretches abdominal organs
  • Cures constipation
  • Stretches
    • Throat
    • Thyroid gland
    • Parathyroid gland
  • Opens ribcage to increase lung capacity
  • Improves flexibility
    • Neck
    • Spine
  • Relives backache
  • Firms and slims
    • Abdomen
    • Waistline                                                 I like this. 🙂

Posted by on January 28, 2010 in Yoga


Day 6-Day off

Went for an easy 3 mile run today, without my ipod. I needed to think. Felt amazing.

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Posted by on January 27, 2010 in Running


Day 5-Class 4

I am relaxed. I am tired. I feel no stress. I can barely move. I skied today and then I went to yoga.

Charlie and I played hooky today. We went skiing. It was my first day up this season. I am still quite sore from yoga, and oh boy, did I feel it when we were on the mountain. First run down, and my quads were screaming at me. I wasn’t sure if I was going to make it through the day. The snow was H-E-A-V-Y. They had gotten about 6 inches of new snow, but the temperature had been hovering around freezing, so it was wet snow. Second run, I felt a little better. Third run I felt a tad bit better. It was more of a workout than it normally would be because of the heavy snow. We went in the back country and I was sweating profusely. “Takeiteasybecauseitsmyfirstdayup” was NOT happening. I wanted to rip my coat and ski pants off and hurl them down the mountain! My lower back ached, my quads were sore, I was sweaty and uncomfortable, and all I wanted to do was go to yoga! Ha.

I did have a good day skiing, even though the snow was like cement. We were able to find some good snow on International, but that was about it. I got a great workout, enjoyed some fresh air and beautiful views from Chair 2 (who can guess where I went skiing? it ain’t no sissy mountain), and had excellent company.

A good day, indeed. Now, off to yoga.

I met Kara at the 4:30 class. I literally got home from skiing, threw my yoga stuff in a bag, and drove to yoga. I had a medium sized bottle of water to drink all day, and hadn’t eaten a lot, but I had to get to class! Another new instructor (I won’t mention her name here) greeted me. No, wait, I wasn’t greeted at all. No smile. No hello. Nothing. 😦

It was a busy class. When “instructor” walked in, she immediately told me to move because I was right in front of her. Oops. Luckily I was able to shift a little to the right.

I knew class was going to be difficult today. Little water+4 hours skiing=tired body. I needed water about 20 minutes in, so, I grabbed my water bottle, just as I had done in the previous 3 classes and went to take a sip, just as I had done in the previous 3 classes (even though it wasn’t technically a “water break.” ) AND I got yelled at! 😦 I was told to hold off on drinking water until the water break. 2 more poses. I was mad. I didn’t want to lie down and take a break, I just wanted some water! Hello! “Instructor!” Did YOU ski all day today?? I don’t think so! Hmmph. (Sorry, venting over). I made it to the water break without dying.

So, all in all class was pretty good considering my intense workout before I went. I noticed improvement in my hamstrings, but, man, my lower back is really sore. 😦 (lots of sad faces today, sorry)

My favorite poses today were:

1.Camel pose

(I feel like I am really, really good at this! I may not be, but I feel as if I am, and that’s all that matters, right?)

2. Rabbit pose

(I feel like I am good at this, too, and ooh, it feels good! It really stretches my spine, neck and lower back).

3. Head to Knee with Stretching Pose

(I put my forehead on my knee today…with my leg straight! I haven’t been able to do that!)

Hmm…all my favorite poses were the ones where I was on the floor. Hey, I was tired today!

Kara did awesome today. I feel like I did pretty awesome. “Instructor” is not awesome.


Posted by on January 27, 2010 in Skiing, Yoga


Day 4-Day off

Today was my first day off from yoga. I woke up considerably less sore than I was yesterday! I can’t wait to go to the 4:30 class tomorrow!

Since I have nothing to talk about pertaining to my daily class, I thought I would educate you on Bikram Yoga. I really had no idea about it other than it was, “Hot Yoga.” Bikram Yoga is the same whether you take a class in Seattle, New York, or India. It is the same 26 poses and 2 breathing exercises (compared to a marathon, 26.2 miles, in more ways than one) done in the same sequence. If you become a Bikram Yoga addict in Seattle, and travel to Hawaii for vacation, find a Bikram Yoga studio, you can jump right into class, expecting the same instruction you receive in Seattle. (I guess I can’t really say, “same” as each instructor as his/her own style, but the curriculum is the same).

Here’s a more detailed explanation of the history, taken from (I recommend visiting the site)


Yogiraj Bikram Choudhury (that’s him above) is the founder of the worldwide Yoga College of India™. Born in Calcutta in 1946, Bikram began Yoga at the age of four with India’s most-renowned physical culturist at that time, Bishnu Ghosh, the younger brother of Paramahansa Yogananda (Author of the most popular book on Yoga, The Autobiography of a Yogi, and founder of the Self-Realization Fellowship in Los Angeles).

Bikram practiced Yoga at least four to six hours every day at Ghosh’s College of Physical Education in Calcutta. At the age of thirteen, he won the National India Yoga Championship. He was undefeated for the following three years and retired as the undisputed All-India National Yoga Champion.

At seventeen, an injury to his knee during a weight-lifting accident brought the prediction from leading European doctors that he would never walk again. Not accepting their pronouncement, he had himself carried back to Bishnu Ghosh’s school, for he knew that if anyone could help to heal his knee, it was his teacher. Six months later, his knee had totally recovered. Ghosh was a celebrated physical culturist and the first to scientifically document Yoga’s ability to cure chronic physical ailments and heal the body.

Bikram was asked by Ghosh to start several Yoga schools in India. The schools were so successful that at Bishnu’s request Bikram traveled to Japan and opened two more. He has since brought his curative methods of Yoga therapy around the world.


The End.

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Posted by on January 26, 2010 in Yoga